I have used the Annabelle dress pattern a number of times already, with both times using a viscose fabric and I loved how flowy it was. It is a perfect pattern for casual and work wear and I was just itching to make another for the warmer weather!
As I have already made the pattern in a viscose fabric, I thought I would try another version in a different fabric. According to the pattern the suggested fabrics are: cotton lawn; linen; viscose; crepe de chine and satin. I wanted to use fabric that was already in my stash (I am trying to not buy fabric for a while!), so therefore I was limited to my choices. Luckily I had some gorgeous Liberty Tana Lawn. I only had 2 metres of fabric (53 inches wide), and the pattern requirements call for at least 2.7 metres of fabric for the size 14. Cue some interesting cutting out!
As a I did not have enough fabric, I decided at the beginning I would use plain navy cotton for the facing. However after laying out the pattern pieces in a different order to the instructions (all still following the grainline!) I managed to cut the majority of the peices out. I have had this problem with Simple Sew patterns before where they recommend way too much fabric!
This is my first time working with cotton lawn and I was surprised by how thin and delicate it was to the touch and I was a little worried it would not drape as well as my previous viscose dresses. However I am pleased to say I think it has worked out very well! The dress is light and airy and it feels like a good use of Liberty fabric.
I just love the colour of the fabric and how it drapes well from the waist.
Simple Sew patterns do not give sizing measurements, instead they give finished garment measurements. Having the finished garment measurements are invaluable to us sewists, especially when sewing one of the big 4 patterns, however I do like to have both measurements to see how much ease they have put in the pattern. According to the measurements I should cut between a size 12 and 14. I ended up cutting the 12 across the neckline and grading out to the 14. The neckline was still to big and had a bit of a gape so I needed to pull in the seams at the shoulders.
Another point to note with the pattern are the instructions. They are not very detailed and very sparse at times! If I had not used the pattern before or was using new techniques, I would feel quite sceptical about using such expensive and gorgeous fabric.
As cotton lawn is quite see-through I decided to line the bodice as well as the bottom. That way I can wear it on a nice warm day with no tights 🙂 I used a plain navy poly cotton brought from a fabric shop on Ebay.
I also decided to french seam the sleeves as it looked a lot neater.
Overall I am happy with the dress and I can see me wearing it throughout the cooler and warmer months. However I might not make the dress again for some time as the instructions always seems to frustrate me!
Have you used this pattern before? What do you think of Simple Sew patterns? Let me know in the comments! 🙂